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[Music clip: From Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, piano version]
01 — Intro. And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings, listeners, from your unswervingly genial host John Derbyshire.
I have a rich cornucopia of items for you this week: mostly political, of course, but artfully blended with observations from history, the athletic arts, and medical science.
Let us proceed.
02 — Nuclear pulse propaganda. Back in the 1950s, nuclear scientists nursed a certain amount of guilt at having come up with weapons that could destroy humanity. By way of compensation, they started putting forward schemes for beneficial, non-destructive uses for nuclear weapons.
One of these schemes was called Nuclear Pulse Propulsion. The thing being propelled would be a starship. To get the starship up to the kind of speed you need for interstellar travel, you'd eject nukes from the rear end of the ship, one after another, and immediately explode them. The energy from each nuke gave the ship an almighty push forward.
Our mainstream media and political elites are running a propaganda campaign to destroy the candidacy of Donald Trump, and it's being propelled forward in a similar way, by regular timed detonations of propaganda bombs. Last week's bomb, you'll recall, was Trump's supposed lack of respect to Gold Star Dad Khizr Khan and his wife.
As related in the August 5th Radio Derb, Mr Khan turned out to be a super-fan of sharia law, especially the bits that authorize wife-beating, and to make his living helping rich foreigners game our immigration laws. By the time that had been unearthed, though, everyone was talking about something else, and Starship Hillary was on its way to Alpha Centauri.
This week's propelling nuke followed a speech Trump gave in North Carolina, August 9th, clip:
[Clip: Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish, the Second Amendment. By the way, if she gets to pick her judges — nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know. But I'll tell you what, that will be a horrible day … If Hillary gets to put her judges … Right now we're tied, you see what's going on …]
The lads at Los Alamos got to work with that. In next to no time they had produced a narrative that was all over the media: Trump had called for the assassination of Mrs Clinton!
BOOM! Another boost for Starship Hillary.
As is often the case with Trump, it's difficult to figure from parsing his words just what he had in mind. Given what we know of the man's character and personality, though, it's extremely unlikely that he was thinking of anything so heinous. Here in New York we've been watching The Donald for forty years. There is nothing in him as vindictive and antisocial as that.
Most likely he just meant that people who work fulltime on Second Amendment issues might be able to come up with some defense that he, Trump, hadn't thought of.
The worst possible construction I can put on the remark is that Trump has a poorly calibrated sense of humor. I had an acquaintance like that once. He'd say things that obviously, from his affect and the social context, he expected would make you laugh, but which in fact made you wince. It's a style of social clumsiness some people suffer from.
That's a stretch, though. Trump's remark doesn't even look much like that. Most probably it was entirely innocuous.
And in the eagerness of Trump-haters to present it as a call to violence, it's hard not to see an element of what psychologists call projection. This deserves a segment of its own, I think. Let's take a trip down Psychology Lane.
A common form of projection occurs when an individual, threatened by his own angry feelings, accuses another of harbouring hostile thoughts.
The political left, especially — and they form a big part of the anti-Trump crusade, though by no means all of it — the political left is stuffed full of angry feelings and a lust for violence. Alt-Right websites have been logging acts of violence against Trump supporters, and the list is long.
Things have gotten so bad that Seth Lipsky, a mild-mannered neocon type — and I would guess not a Trump supporter, certainly not an enthusiastic one — was moved to publish a column last week headed Liberal attacks on Trump are so unhinged, it might get him killed.
Lipsky's correct; it might. The seething anger and lust for violence on the political left bears careful watching. I quoted an instance last week: the response of a writer at GQ magazine to the GOP convention having showcased Patricia Smith, mother of a guy who died in the Benghazi fiasco while working for the State Department. Quote from that writer — not a solitary comment-thread kook, mind, but a salaried writer at a tony magazine, quote:
I don't care how many children Pat Smith lost. I would like to beat her to death.
There are violent nutcases at many points of the political spectrum, of course, but it can't be denied that they are heavily concentrated on the left. Just read the comment threads on lefty websites. See the spitting, frothing rage, the heavy dependence on grossly obscene or scatological language — "POS," "stfu," "asf," and the rest — coarse, brutish language as a verbal proxy for violent action.
Or try the following thought experiment. Imagine you're a suburban Dad with small kids in the house. You like Trump's message, and you contemplate putting out a yard sign advertising the candidate.
Then you think: Wait a minute. Wouldn't that be an invitation to get my windows broken, my kids scared out of their little wits? Better not.
Do supporters of Mrs Clinton have those same worries and fears? I'm pretty sure they don't.
Out on the racial left, it's even worse. Just this week the black movie actor Will Smith, who is a big donor to Louis Farrakhan's anti-white Nation of Islam movement, looked foward to the coming opportunity to "cleanse" — that's his word, "cleanse" — Trump supporters out of the U.S.A. It's clear that a great many black Americans walk around all day with fantasies of killing white people.
You see this concentration of violence on the left at all scales. On the grandest historical scale, leftist regimes in general are far more murderous than any others. A typical conservative or reactionary authoritarian dictatorship — Pinochet's Chile or Chiang Kai-shek's China — will murder dissidents in the tens or hundreds of thousands. That's deplorable, and as a dissident myself I certainly deplore it.
For mass murder on the grand scale, though, your best bet is a dictator of the left: a Mao, a Stalin, a Pol Pot, a Castro. The scale of killing then is higher by a couple of orders of magnitude. The one exception to this rule was Hitler's Germany, which is why the left always brings it to the front of every discussion.
It's not precisely pertinent, but I can't resist here quoting Robert Conquest's great limerick on the U.S.S.R. Quote:
There once was a Marxist named Lenin
The left goes to much trouble to play down and cover up their own violent impulses. The constant recourse to Hitler is one symptom of this. Another is the fifty-year effort to persuade Americans that John F. Kennedy was killed by far-right John Birch society wackos. Two whole generations of Americans have grown up being told this. In fact Kennedy was killed by a communist.
These patterns have played out all across the modern age. They are playing out now in this Presidential campaign. We should all hope, not just for Donald Trump's sake but for the sake of our country and its political health, that they stay at the level of psychological phenomena.
04 — The anti-Romney. You've got to hand it to Donald Trump: He's the anti-Mitt Romney.
Remember how spooked Ol' Mittens was any time the mainstream media squealed at something he said? Remember when he endorsed "self-deportation"? — a perfectly sensible and humane concept. If we rigorously enforce the people's laws on immigration, then illegal aliens won't be able to get jobs, so they'll go back to their countries of origin — self-deportation. Well, maybe they will and maybe they won't, but the media spun it as cattle wagons rolling to the gas chambers. Mittens scurried for cover, and we heard no more about self-deportation.
That sure isn't Trump's style. Wednesday this week The Donald told a rally that Barack Obama was the founder of ISIS. The following morning, on Hugh Hewitt's radio show, Hewitt tackled him on that.
[Clip: Last night, you said the President was the founder of ISIS. I know what you meant. You meant that he created the vacuum, he lost the peace.
Personally, speaking as a professional writer with some dedication to the precise meaning of words, I'm shaking my head listening to that. But then I reflect on how utterly un-Romneyish it is; and I further reflect on the fact that Romney's midwestern niceness was so uninspiring that millions of working-class white Americans who might have swung the election for him thought their time would be better spent staying home and watching Celebrity Apprentice instead.
So who knows? Romney lost; maybe this anti-Romney will win.
Thomas Lifson over at American Thinker on Wednesday, argues that Trump is practicing, quote, "political jujitsu, able to anticipate the opposition's reaction and planning to use their momentum against them," end quote. Lifson notes that in The Art of the Deal, Trump brags about psyching out his rivals in negotiations.
Further quote from Lifson:
People who despise him are going to write bad things about him anyway, so why not push them over the edge into revealing more than they intend about their own prejudices?
I'm not totally sure I believe this, but I'd definitely like to. Heck, the mainstream media reptiles are going to go full bore against a Republican candidate — any Republican candidate — anyway, so why not try jujitsu?
I'd better add that I'm not including Hugh Hewitt under the heading "media reptiles" there. He's a decent sort of chap, if a bit clueless in some areas, and he treated the candidate respectfully. It's an outlet, though, and the reptiles were listening.
Trump's a smart guy. I know, he started with a family business; but he expanded that business a hundredfold. That takes smarts. Perhaps he's just treating the media the way his base thinks they should be treated, and exposing their general level of leftist hysteria.
Did I mention that Romney lost? Against an inevitably hostile media, it's time a candidate tried something different.
05 — Republican Bourbons. For a totally different take on Trump, see Peggy Noonan's column last weekend. Title, at any rate in the New York Post version, Don in the Dumps. Subtitle: "The polls are in. Americans think Trump is Crazy."
I always make time for Peggy's columns. Yeah, yeah, I know: She's Conservatism, Inc., hardcore establishment, and missing a lot of the equipment needed to make sense of the world. She has no science or math, probably believes that black underachievement is the result of wrong parenting practices, or not enough religion.
She writes well, though, and she sure knows her way round that establishment she's a member of. She has more self-awareness than the average Conservatism, Inc. apologist, and occasionally offers penetrating insights into the mentality and workings of the GOP elite.
In last week's column Peggy gave us the full GOP-establishment disdain for Trump. He's boorish; he acts like he's insane; he's not serious about running for President; he can't process advice — Peggy means, of course, advice from establishment types like herself and, oh, to pick a name at random … Mitt Romney. He's shown disrespect to his own supporters, who've put themselves on the line for him. Hey, Peggy, we can handle it, don't worry. And so on.
But then Peggy delivered one of those penetrating insights. Money quote, about three-quarters of the way through, quote:
From what I've seen there has been zero reflection on the part of Republican leaders on how much the base's views differ from theirs and what to do about it. The GOP is not at all refiguring its stands.
That again, to recycle my favorite Pat Buchananism, is right down the smokestack.
The veteran French diplomat Talleyrand is supposed to have said, concerning the kings of France's Bourbon dynasty who were reinstalled by the allies after Napoleon's defeat, quote: "They have learned nothing, and forgotten nothing."
Just so with the GOP. They learned nothing from Romney's failure in 2012; and they have learned nothing from Donald Trump's success in this year's primaries.
As for forgetting nothing: Well, if we are positing a Trump defeat in November here and making an analogy with the defeat of Napoleon and the restoration of the Bourbons, the main thing the Bourbons couldn't forget was the reign of their man Louis XIV in the decades before 1715, when France was the politically, militarily, and culturally dominant power in Europe.
Ronald Reagan plays somewhat the same role in the GOP-elite imagination. "If only we could find another Reagan to rally our voters behind," they sigh.
This is a different country from the America of 1980, though. Most notably, it's less white, thanks to mass Third World immigration. Ronald Reagan himself couldn't win a Presidential election in today's America. He most surely couldn't get elected Governor of California.
The Bourbons never did get another Louis XIV. Their dynasty sputtered out at last in a popular revolution and the Second Empire under Napoleon's nephew.
Yes, Trump might fail in November and the GOP establishment might regain power over their party. Things won't be as they were before, though. They never are. Too much will have changed. The GOP elites will just be going through the motions, like the Bourbons after Napoleon.
Does Donald Trump have any nephews? I'll check and get back to you …
06 — Peggy gets it. That last segment was recorded before I'd read Peggy Noonan's column of this weekend.
I'm glad I cut Peggy some slack. Reading this later column, I see that she really does get it. I doubt she'll ever be a Trump supporter, but she shows willingness to think about why he's gotten to where he's gotten to, a willingness not much in evidence elsewhere among Conservatism, Inc. types.
This weekend's column has the title How Global Elites Forsake Their Countrymen. Subtitle, quote: "Those in power see people at the bottom as aliens whose bizarre emotions they must try to manage," end quote.
Peggy doesn't make it easy to read her columns online without a subscription. That's understandable and I respect it. You can't expect everyone to be as free with the productions of their minds as we are here at VDARE.com. It's an important column, though, so with the hope that Peggy won't sue me, I'll give you a long quote from the very end. Long quote:
Affluence detaches, power adds distance to experience. I don't have it fully right in my mind but something big is happening here with this division between the leaders and the led. It is very much a feature of our age. But it is odd that our elites have abandoned or are abandoning the idea that they belong to a country, that they have ties that bring responsibilities, that they should feel loyalty to their people or, at the very least, a grounded respect.
End long quote from Peggy Noonan. I urge you to read the whole column. If you don't want to pay a subscription to do so, it'll be in this weekend's edition of the print Wall Street Journal in the periodicals section of your local public library, and syndicated out to the New York Post and I assume other print outlets in other cities.
I especially urge you to do so if you are a decision-maker at the Republican National Committee. Peggy gets it. From what I've been seeing so far in your response to the Donald Trump phenomenon, you guys don't.
Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
I have ranted long and often here on Radio Derb about the horrid nation-killing blight of Midwestern Nice. Well, I think we have located the dark heart of that blight, the Mordor of Midwestern Nice, where the Dark Lord sits on his dark throne plotting the subjugation and enslavement of the world to his sinister powers of all-destroying niceness. Oh yeah!
Where is it, this shadowy realm from which evil emanates like a foul miasma seeping slowly across the land? In southeast Wisconsin, that's where, up against the western shore of Lake Michigan, where the outermost suburban fringes of Chicago and Milwaukee meet and mingle with the cheery, smiling, hospitable, very nice German-Irish-Scandinavian-Puritan-descended small-town and farming folk of the northern prairies.
That's where you will find Wisconsin's First Congressional District, the location this week of a GOP primary contest between the incumbent Republican congressman Paul Ryan — the Dark Lord of establishment Republicanism, in fact the current Speaker of the House of Representatives — and challenger Paul Nehlen.
Congressman Ryan, lifetime career politician and Mitt Romney's Nice-Presidential … I'm sorry: I meant to say Vice-Presidential — running mate in 2012, won this week's primary easily, in fact nicely.
Why wouldn't he? With his open, boyish smile, his love-the-world egalitarianism, and his F grade on immigration from NumbersUSA, Ryan is the perfect stooge for wealthy donors from the cheap-labor and global-banking lobbies.
Paul Nehlen, his primary challenger, put up a brave fight, assisted by Ann Coulter and other patriots, but the dark forces of Midwestern Niceness were too powerful for him and he was crushed, with 16 percent of the vote against Ryan's 84 percent.
The crushing was of course done very nicely. "Excuse me, Mr Nehlen" murmured Ryan as he stomped Nehlen's mangled corpse into the prairie mud, "I beg your pardon!"
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Those Midwesterners and their accurséd insufferable niceness will be the death of us all, the death of our country, if we don't rein them in.
When Harry Truman left office in 1953, he had no income but his army pension of $112.56 a month. He had to take out a bank loan while negotiating a deal to write his memoirs. That was the way of things all over the Anglosphere. It was part of the tradition of modest Anglo-Saxon government. When Bob Menzies, Australia's longest-serving Prime Minister, left office in 1966 after 18 years in power, having given up a lucrative legal career for politics, he could not afford to buy a house in Melbourne.
How long ago that seems! Politics today is a money racket. We don't have a democracy; we have a kleptocracy — government by thieves. That's one of the facts behind Peggy Noonan's observation on the detachment of our elites. It is also, I am sure, one of the reasons so many people support Donald Trump. Whatever else you might say about Trump, he surely isn't in it for the money.
Just as surely, the Clintons are. We got more confirmation of that on Tuesday this week, when the good-government group Judicial Watch released 300 pages of State Department documents, including numerous hitherto unseen emails, that they had obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.
The emails make it plain that the way to get the attention of Mrs Clinton's State Department was to make a big fat donation to the Clinton Foundation, a pseudo-charity set up by Bill and Hill for them to use as a personal ATM. The Washington Times reported last year that only ten percent of its expenditures go to charitable grants.
The players in the Clinton's pay-to-play scheme are shady characters like Gilbert Chagoury, a Lebanese construction billionaire who spent years as a close associate of Nigerian military dictator Sani Abacha in the mid-1990s. President Abacha was worth around three billion dollars when he died under mysterious circumstances in 1998.
Having thus mastered the art of milking corrupt Third World politicians, Gilbert Chagoury was naturally attracted to the Clinton State Department. After a seven-figure donation to the Clinton Foundation and a pledge of a billion to the Clinton Global Initiative (another of their slush funds), Mr Chagoury was well-placed. The emails released this week in the Judicial Watch batch make it plain that when Chagoury said "jump" our State Department responded with "how high?"
None of this is really new, of course. We've known for twenty years what the Clintons are up to. Nothing ever gets done about it and nothing will. They've got the whole system covered. Everyone's scared of them, everyone's paid off. It's like Zimbabwe.
The tragedy here — it's a real tragedy, one to make you weep — is the loss of that old ideal of honest, modest Anglo-Saxon government, and its replacement with this shabby Third World crony capitalism.
It takes an effort of imagination now to remember that in the U.S.A. in 1953, in Australia in 1966, you could utter the phrase "public service" with no ironical intent.
That is no longer the case. I have actually watched, on TV, Hillary Clinton say that phrase "public service." It came out of her mouth dripping green slime and stinking like last week's roadkill.
09 — Miscellany. And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.
Imprimis: I can't believe I got to our closing miscellany of brief items without mentioning the Olympics.
Wait, yes: I can believe it. I'm a sports nullity. I haven't attended a sporting event, other than at my kids' schools, in well over a decade.
My trouble and strife, however, is of a different temper. She does like to watch the Olympics on TV, so I've been catching some of the events when passing through the living room. Here are four random observations.
Observation One: Men's synchronized diving has to be the gayest Olympic event yet devised. I was embarrassed just to be watching it. Get a room, guys!
Observation Two: On the heteronormative side, beach volleyball of course takes the palm. Did you know that there is a men's beach volleyball event, too? It doesn't seem to get much coverage, I can't fathom why.
Observation Three: If beach volleyball was the easiest thing to watch in the Olympics this week, the hardest to watch was undoubtedly that Armenian weightlifter dislocating his elbow in a clean and jerk. Hoo boy.
I hope Mr Karapetyan makes a full recovery. And with no disrespect to him at all, it's salutary to be reminded that even at these far extremes of training and ability, the human body has its limits.
Observation Four: It wouldn't be an Olympics without a cheating controversy. From my own occasional viewing, I'd say the Chinese women's gymnastics team is a prime suspect.
Gymnasts are supposed to be at least sixteen, but some of these girls look closer to six.
I know Chinese ladies age differently. I don't need to be told; I'm married to one. Mrs Derbyshire looks like a college cheerleader; she is in fact 125 years old. Still, these gymnasts are really straining my credulity.
Does the IOC think the ChiComs couldn't possibly be lying about the ages of their athletes? That the nation that invented printing doesn't know how to fake a birth certificate?
Let me give the IOC a couple of clues about the level of honesty to be expected from the Chinese state authorities. Clue Number One: they're communists. Clue Number Two: THEY'RE COMMUNISTS!
Item: Finally, here's one from the world of science.
Australian science journalist Karl Kruszelnicki wrote in the British Medical Journal about a nurse he'd encountered who'd had something on her conscience. The thing troubling her, to which she sought an answer, was: does flatulence spread germs?
This nurse, you see, works in her hospital's operating room. While attending surgical operations, she had occasionally yielded to the impulse to let rip with a silent one while surgery was in progress. Had she thereby compromised the sterility of the operating-room environment?
Dr Kruszelnicki assembled a research team and they set out to find an answer. They used Petri dishes, those little round dishes of jelly used to cultivate bacteria. One of the team broke wind five centimeters from a dish while fully clothed. He then repeated the procedure with another dish, but this time with pants down.
The second dish sprouted bacteria; the first didn't. Apparently clothing is an effective filter for bacteria.
Dr Kruszelnicki's conclusion, in his own admirably economical phrasing: "Don't fart naked near food."
So that nurse can go to work with a clear conscience. Although, since neither she nor her hospital was identified by name, there are going to be a lot of suspicious looks exchanged over the surgical masks in Australia's operating rooms for a while.
10 — Signoff. That's it, ladies and gents. Thank you for listening, and I hope you found our news items instructive and improving. I hope also you appreciate the exquisite delicacy with which I presented that last item about flatulence in Australia without once resorting to the phrase "Down Under." Nothing but the highest standards of good taste here at Radio Derb!
There will be more from Radio Derb next week.
[Music clip: More Derbyshire Marches.]